As usual in autumn, Riga will become the capital of Baltic design, hosting from 5–7 October, in Ķīpsala, the Riga International Design Fair "Design Isle 2018". It will show industrial, fashion, environmental, interior, photo and graphical design works by Baltic design sector companies, professionals and students.
Leading Baltic designers and design companies showcase a vast range of design furniture, luminaries, design clothing and accessories, lifestyle products, original decors etc.
Evaluate the originality of Latvian design and see the best works nominated by the jury of professionals for the LDS Design Award 2018 held in four categories – interior, environmental, product and visual communication design.
See unparalleled ideas and extraordinary solutions offered by the students of Latvian design schools and colleges presenting their graduation works or creative projects.
Baltic Design Fair
Talented local and Baltic designers sell original and modern design products – interior decors, clothing, accessories, lifestyle products and many other different products during the Baltic Design Fair held within the framework of “Design Isle”.
Aldis Circenis, designer
Latvian industrial design is non-uniform. There are certain industries where design is developing because manufacturers understand and appreciate the importance of good design in maximizing product sales. Such, for example, is the packaging design industry with beauty and food companies leading the parade. The drive for development there equals to sort of rivalling; it is an opportunity to stimulate demand by means of excellent design.
We can speak about good design in the wood processing and furniture industry just in few cases. Furniture market is highly fragmented, the offer is often casual. New product development and putting them to production is a very expensive process due to great resource capacity. Consumers, in turn, make several groups with distinctly different tastes. For this reason, local furniture manufacturers and sellers can not achieve significant product sales to make development and production of high-quality design furniture cost-effective. Lack of traditions in creating modern Latvian environment slows down the development of industrial design in furniture industry.
To be able to compete internationally, Latvian designers should develop local projects because it is a chance to experiment, develop their own style, build confidence, grow and develop.
Interior design and architecture
Ivars Šļivka, architect
Design for architects mostly means a culture of details – a continuation of architectural conception in the details of interiors, facades and environmental design. A good architect is certainly also a designer. Rastrelli made the drawings of door handles for palaces himself! It is a question of quality. The quality of a construction or transformed environmental object depends on the quality of professional collaboration.
The design part of projects in our office is developed by architects or outsourced designers. Thus only, the intended sensory field of a building can be realised. We also see that with the relative abundance of designers there are not that many professionals who could deal with the environment or interior design tasks at best level. Unless talking about design as decoration, this profession requires a certain level of knowledge in sciences, the designer schools and universities do not provide or provide insufficiently.
Anita Sedlina, fashion editor, style magazine "Pastaiga"
Like any design discipline in Latvia, fashion design is not clearly definable and describable. Beauty makes this domain tempting to everyone leading to a noticeable dissonance between professionals and newcomers, the latter being better known and more popular than the first; however, that does not always mean better quality.
One of the biggest problems in this domain is the inability to cooperate and individual efforts taken to cover all areas between the product and the buyer thus stealing quality off each of them. On the other hand, the interest of people and their ability to assess the value of products has increased over a couple of recent years and that is very much encouraging. We must understand and praise Latvian fashion design, to make it intelligible and known in the rest of the world. Each brand should take this path on its own.
The most active, enterprising and quality fashion brands are well known in both Latvia and abroad. Success stories to be mentioned are Agnese Narnicka’s brand "One Wolf", Elina Dobele’s architectural footwear and all those keeping the crossbar in fashion and art very high like "Mareunrol's" do, as well as those showing a positive trend in kids' fashion development like "Paade Mode"
Education and Innovation
The festival annually gathers young and promising talents, who represent the best Latvian schools and universities. They show their works in industrial, fashion, interior and environmental design that combine fresh and modern ideas, revolutionary and humorous aspect of design and its application. These works have a great potential!